What is Authentic Love?
This is a question the world has been asking since Adam and Eve took a bite out of the apple. It is probably not surprising that modern society is very confused by this question. For instance, from the perspective of much of the entertainment industry, love has been pretty much reduced to a sexual act. The truth of the matter is that, in most cases, what is presented as love in our culture is not love at all but a counterfeit love. Read More >
Humanity, its dignity and its balance, will depend at every moment and on every place on the globe on who man is for woman and who woman is for man. - John Paul II
Love Is?! Part 1
The morning session had gone well, the first of four the JPll Renewal Center was scheduled to give at an all-day retreat for a Catholic High School. As I headed down the hallway to a small-group break out room with … Read more >
How Do I know if it is really Love?!… and the Virtue of Chastity
By: Jack Rigert, Director of John Paul II Renewal Center Both of my Grandfathers, one Swiss and one Danish, as well as my Dad and Mom were Professional Chefs, and as a young man, I followed in their footsteps. For … Read more >
Science, Faith…and Love
Steve, a scientist, attended a class I taught for parents of students in our Religious Education program. One day I opened up the class by asking if any of them had a question or comment they cared to share. Steve … Read more >
“13 Reasons Why” We Should Be Learning, Living and Sharing John Paul II’s Theology of the Body
When I first heard about Netflix’s controversial new show 13 Reasons Why, the charge that it glorified suicide and encouraged copycat behavior was enough for me not to want to watch it. Then my brother, whose judgment I trust, urged … Read more >
A Flash of Light
I get a flash of a second with young women.
Thirty to forty-five minutes seems like a trivial moment in the grand scheme of their entire lives, especially when I know well what I am up against.
I get a fleeting minute to tell the ones who do not believe it that they are valuable, worthy, loved, and beautiful. Read more >
Your Body Matters
A few nights ago, while standing in single digit temperatures, I was locked out of my home with no key and no one to let me in. So I chilled at the nearest McDonald’s to wait for the rest of my community to come home. I sat at one of their new electronics charging stations, which didn’t work but attracted a lot of interesting people in New York City at 11:00pm. The first few came and went but the last two sat and we all had a nice two-hour conversation. One was a fashion model who was visiting from L.A. for Fashion Week and the other was a fashion photographer. We talked about good number of things but mainly about the struggles of working in the fashion industry, which led to a portion of our discussion that really bothered me. The photographer shared that one of the biggest common frustrations in her line of work is dealing with models who struggle with getting too physically close with others who are not their significant other… Read more >
A Winning Relationship Starts with You
What is the purpose of dating? The world has several notions regarding the purpose of dating. One being something along the lines of “you only live once so just have fun with it.”
Another is the idea we find in our popular TV shows and movies, which is something like “dating is super casual and doesn’t really require any serious commitment.” My personal favorite is probably, “love whoever, and take chances.”
These popular notions surrounding the purpose of dating and being in a relationship just make me sad. I think it’s fair to say, we as a culture have lost sight of the purpose of dating, which in turn can make dating really confusing.
So what is this true meaning? Read more >
A “NO” TO A “NO” IS A “YES”
One of the commonest complaints against Catholicism is that it is the religion of “no,” especially in regard to the sexual dimension of life. As the rest of the culture is moving in a progressively more permissive direction, the church seems to represent a crabbed, puritanical negativity toward sexuality. I think it is important, first, to make a distinction between two modalities of “no.” On the one hand, there is “no” pure and simple—a denial, a negation of something good. When a jealous person sees someone else’s success, he will say “no” to it, out of resentment. When a racist perceives the object of his irrational hatred, he will say “no” to him and try to undermine him. But on the other hand, there is a “no” which is in service of a “yes,” since it represents a “no” to a “no;” it is a double negative that constitutes a positive. Read more >
Breaking Free from Porn: A 5-Step Battle Plan!
If you or someone you love struggles with pornography, it’s my hope that this article will be of help to you as you seek to be free, and seek to be healed. Read more >
Divine Romance: A Chastity Speaker Gives Love a Second Chance
There once was a little girl who dreamed of love and her wedding day. These thoughts would dance through her mind as she would play in her world of make-believe. There were dress-up wedding gowns, stuffed animal guest list, plastic rings, and a prince charming yet to be named. She couldn’t wait for the day when she would stand before pale candlelight and say forever to the man her Lord created just for her; a man that was destined for her before the beginning of time. Read more >
Avoiding Fatal Attractions
A man eating lunch at a restaurant notices an attractive woman at another table, and is immediately drawn to her beauty. His heart stirs, and he finds himself wanting to see her again.
Yet, this is not the first time she has caught his eye. And his attraction to her is more than physical. She works for the same large company, and he has been drawn to her warm personality, her cheerful smile and her kindness toward others. He is taken in by her alluring personality as much as by her natural beauty. Read more >
Love Is... God's Plan
St. Bridget Catholic Church in Loves Park, IL
JOIN Father Ryan Browning and Jack Rigert, Director of the John Paul ll Renewal Center, Wednesday, November 15th from 7 to 8:30 PM!
Love Is... God's Plan
St. Catharine Drexel in Sugar Grove, IL
JOIN Father Kyle Manno and Jack Rigert, Director of the John Paul ll Renewal Center, Tuesday, November 14th from 7 to 8:30 PM!
For more information please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.